LAHORE           -        Federation of International Polo’s (FIP) Afro-Asia head Ishaq Khan Khakwani has said that Pakistan has bright chances of earning the rights of hosting the Polo World Cup 2020 in a bid to be held during FIP General Assembly to take place on December 13, 2019 in Argentina.

In an interview with The Nation on Monday, Ishaq Khakwani, who is also the former President of the Lahore Polo Club, said: “The FIP organises the Polo World Cup after every three years. Last time, Australia hosted the World Cup in 2017, while the FIP had initially chosen USA to host the next one in 2020 but due to some internal issues, USA has sought an extension from the FIP as they now want to host it at the end of 2021.

“Pakistan is ready and capable of hosting the big event on time (in 2020) which is as per the constitution of the FIP. With USA unable to host on time, it gives us a great opportunity to submit our bid. The FIP General Assembly meeting is scheduled to take place in Argentina on December 13, 2019 where most of its 90 members will be present and will decide on the bid,” he added. Ishaq Khakwani said that Pakistan has very good polo venues to host the World Cup 2020 in a befitting manner. “The Lahore Polo Club is one of the best facilities in the entire Asia. We have three international standard polo fields, which are capable of hosting the World Cup in a successful way. We also have five other international standard polo fields in Lahore which belong to affiliate clubs. This region has over a 1000 years old history of polo, where common men come and enjoy the high-quality polo on offer.”

Revealing the delegation of Pakistan, which will attend the FIP General Assembly, where bid to host the next world cup takes place, the former LPC chief said that he will lead the delegation, while its other members are Maj Gen Adnan, Col Rab Nawaz Tiwana and Emran Akhtar. “We will strongly present our stance of hosting the Polo World Cup 2020 in the scheduled year and the world will see the hospitality, love, respect and level of polo facilities in Pakistan.

“We have been assured full support from our government as well as Pakistan Army, who are standing with us in making this event a success. We have the best venues and the world will see our hospitality,” he added.

It is worth mentioning here that 5 regions of the world include North America, South America, Europe, Continent of Africa/Asia and the last one having Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia, Philippines and Singapore. Before the world cup, playoffs are played to finalize the participants of the world cup. After the bid, the FIP General Assembly will decide the schedule of the playoffs and the final venue of the World Cup 2020.